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Dipping Sauces for Hotpot/Steamboat

Chilli Padi Dip
My mum’s insanely hot chilli padi dip

See Also: Chinese New Year Recipes

Cooking hotpot (steamboat) this Lunar New Year? Many people have asked me for recommendations on dipping sauces, so I decided to compile a list of my favourite dipping sauces for hotpot/steamboat. Hope you like them and if you have a good recommendation or recipe, do share with me via comment.

Note: This post is NOT a paid review.
Suki Sauce
1. Dancing Chef Suki Sauce (about S$2+ per bottle, sold exclusively at NTUC this year)
This is my family’s favourite sauce for steamboat. The sauce reminds me of the dipping sauce served at Coca Restaurant which I like a lot. Ever since we discovered it, our family dinner table is never without this sauce when we have hotpot. Serve it with toasted sesame seeds and chopped coriander. For more information, check out this post.

Sacha Sauce
2. Sacha Sauce
I discovered Sacha sauce (沙茶酱) in Taiwan. It is actually Taiwanese version of spicy satay sauce. The Bull Head brand seem to be the most famous. It is made from soybean oil, garlic, shallots, chilli, brill fish, and dried shrimp. I bought this bottle in Taipei, but it can also be found at selected places in Singapore (Yue Hwa in Chinatown sells it). It is good as a dip (serve it with lots of coriander) and also can be used in cooking (stir-fries and grilling). The taste reminds me of XO Sauce, at a fraction of the price. In Taiwan mala hotpot restaurants, there is usually a table of condiments and see many Taiwanese making their own sauce concoction by mixing Sacha sauce with minced garlic, chopped chilli, coriander etc – the more ‘rojak’ the sauce, the better!

Chilli Padi Dip
3. Home-made chilli padi dip
(Get the recipe here)
This is my mum’s recipe which I love very much. Warning: It’s insanely hot, recommended only for serious chilli padi lovers. I absolutely love to dip shabu shabu meat in this sauce!

Pu Tien Chilli Sauce
4. Pu Tien chilli sauce
(from Pu Tien, S$6.80 per bottle)
I love this chilli sauce and I frequently serve it alongside my baked chicken wings. It makes an excellent dip for the steamboat ingredients too. Whenever I have leftover chilli sauce, I will dip it in plain tapioca chips. Very shiok!

Lee Kum Kee XO Sauce
5. XO Sauce (about S$20 per bottle, Lee Kum Kee brand)
XO Sauce is a gourmet Cantonese seafood sauce made up of dried scallops & dried shrimps among other ingredients, and it can be eaten on its own as a condiment or used in stir-fries. If you want a touch of luxury on the dinner table,  then XO Sauce is the sauce for you.

8 comments on “Dipping Sauces for Hotpot/Steamboat”

  1. Putien’s chilli sauce is so good that I can eat a bowl of rice with just it.

  2. Oh i’m late to know about the suki sauce
    never mind, i’ll do the chilli padi dip sauce, yum!
    thks for the recipe and Happy Chinese New Year to u and family :)

  3. Nice dipping sauces!
    Happy CNY and Gong Xi Fa Cai!!

  4. Nice selection. Can’t do without a hot dipping sauce when having steamboat :)

  5. Hey how can I get some of that Pu Tien chili sauce sent to my house in California? I bought some the last 2 times I was in Singapore but it goes quick and there is nothing like it?! or better yet, what’s the recipe? I emailed the restaurant but do they sell it outside Singapore?

  6. There’s one made from fermented tofu that I really like. Any ideas on that particular one. Im guessing it’s fermented tofu blended, but with what?

  7. I’ve tried your mum’s spicy dip for 2 years of CNY steamboat and it’s delicious!!! A must have whenever we do steamboat. Everyone loves it! It’s much nicer than the Dancing Chef sauce which isn’t spicy at all. Haha.

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